Thursday, May 28, 2009


I feel so bad right now that I want to go home and take care of Cooper. Because of constant complaints from the neighbors, I gave in and bought a shock collar for Cooper last night at Petsmart. I had to test it on him to make sure it works and it was the saddest thing watching him get a shock. It's annoying to hear him bark and he doesn't bark like a normal dog; it kind of sounds like one long yell/shout thing. And he keeps that up for hours. I don't know if he's lonely, scared, what, I don't know but I had to do something because leaving the radio on or the tv on doesn't seem to have an effect on him.
He's a fast learner so I'm hoping he'll figure out that when he barks, it's a bad thing and he'll stop barking on his own. I just feel like a bad person fo getting one of those collars.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

You Can Come Inside, But You Can't

Cooper's a relatively easy going dog who loves everyone. Anyone that walks in through the door is his new best friend for life. He greets them a thousand times better than the way he greets me; tail wagging, shiba grin on his face, and ears pinned to the side of his head. However, I have noticed that there are certain people that he seems to almost hate. He turns into the ideal watchdog by growling, barking and baring his teeth to try and get that person out of the house.
OK, so I've only noticed this behavior with one or two guys; one was a cable guy who completely ignored him and hurt his feelings and the other is my friend Austin. Granted, Austin doens't really come over often but when he does, Cooper will not stop barking at him. I don't know why he does that; maybe it's some weird alpha thing. Austin usually teases Cooper by barking back and that just pisses off the little guy even more.
Side Note: it's actually super cute watching Cooper get mad. His "angry face" is so darn cute and I don't know how anyone can take him seriously when he's scrunching his nose and narrowing his eyes. Usually he gets frustrated because I laugh and tears into a toy and wringing it within the last inch of its life.
Anyway, Austin came over yesterday and I kept Cooper in his house. He was fine, didn't bark, whine, or really, make a single sound. What a weird-o.

Friday, May 22, 2009


I have a lot of business trips coming up in the next couple of months. Luckily, most of them are short, 3-4 day trips but that means I'm having to leave Cooper almost every other week. David can usually dog sit but now he's on the project as well and I'm having a hard time finding someone willing to watch Cooper.
It's not that he's a horrible dog to take care of but he is dog aggressive and he tends to bark when he's feeling lonely and bored. I'm thinking of boarding him but I really don't want to do that. I'm hoping that some of my friends will be willing to watch him; most of the time, David and I aren't scheduled for the same sessions.
When I went over to David's last night to pick Cooper up, it was the first time that he jumped into my arms and started whining and crying. I think he was super excited to see me and finally go home since he was staying with Mitch for awhile. It was sweet and I liked that he missed me but I feel terrible because I'm leaving again soon. Plus, I think that the constant back and forth of bringing him to different homes is going to drive him crazy. He's really good at adapting to new surroundings but I just don't want him to be stressed out.
Oh well, poor Cooper. At least I have a whole week to spend with him before another trip :)

Monday, May 4, 2009

Barking, Hoarding, and Trimming Nails

Usually I can trim Cooper's nails if I have someone holding him. Since I live alone and David's too timid to hold Cooper, I have to resort to tricking him into staying still. I like to ask him to do tricks and reward him and then I trim a nail or two when I say "shake" and he gives me his paw. He freaks out because he finally realizes what happened and will scream and run away for a few minutes before he forgets all about it. Lately I've been teaching him to "relax" (lie on his side) so I can trim away.
I don't have problems with his back paws. I just cradle him in my lap while crooning, "Good boy!" as I clip away. I have more problems with his front paws and especially his dew claws. I knew I should have gotten those removed when we got him neutered...anyway, I tend to give up and trim just 2 of his nails on each paw. It works out ok. I wish he was smart like Sari and even Pickle and just grind his nails on the sidewalks.
Lately he has been barking/screaming/howling whenever I leave the apartment and he's not with me. On work days he seems to be fine and I don't hear him but on the weekends, good god...I already had the neighbors complain twice so I don't know what to do. Whenever I leave him on the weekends or even weeknights, I fill his Kong with kibble and treats and hope that'll suffice. I don't want to buy a bark collar because I don't think they'd work on him and if I got him that citronella spraying crap, I just know it'll get all over my stuff and I hate the smell of citronella. I would get a shock collar but I know Cooper would scream and that'll just shock him with higher voltage. So I'm hoping that the Kong will work long enough for my neighbors to go on with their lives and actually go to work. How the hell do I get that one neighbor that never works or even leave the house for that matter?
Cooper has a tendency to hide things in his house. I remember I had a 6 pack of those snack size yogurt raisins and I couldn't find them for a week. I came home and Cooper drops a box of the raisins at my feet and looks up at me like, "hey, you should open this and give me one..." I was stunned and asked, "Cooper! Where did you get this?!" He gives a guilty look at his house and I knew that's where he was hiding them. He looked so worried when I dug them out. Luckily he didn't open any of the boxes or I would have had to take him to the vet. Apparently raisins are bad for dogs.
Sometimes he hides toys in there. I once found some socks and underwear; both Corey's and mine.